Research Funding (Career Funding: $573,747)


Adams, M.D. & Hatzopoulou, M (Co-PI). Quantifying the Effects of Public Transit Interventions on Urban Environments and Public Health. XSeed: Expanding Our Research Impact Through Inter-Disciplinary Collaboration. $120,000.


Adams, M.D. (P.I.) Development of a Spatially transferable and temporally resolved Urban Corridor Air and Noise pollution model: STUCAN. NSERC Discovery Grants Program – Individual. $137,500.


Co-PI: Laliberte, N. & Adams, M.D. Geographers Without Borders: Partnering with the Peel Aboriginal Network. Research Opportunity Funding, $4,035


PI: Adams, M.D., STUCAN - A Spatially-transferable and Temporally-resolved Urban Corridor Air and Noise pollution model - How to locate air pollution monitors in an urban environment, and baseline air and noise pollution data for the Hurontario LRT line. Connaught New Researcher Award, University of Toronto. $8,960.


PI: Adams, M.D. et al. Geocomputation Server. University of Toronto Mississauga - VP Research Equipment Funds. $25,370


PI: Adams, M.D., University of Toronto Mississauga – Applications of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Research Workshop. UTM Outreach, Conference and Colloquia Fund. $1,283.


PI: Adams, M.D., Air Pollution in Full Day Kindergarten Outdoor Play Areas.  UTM Research and Scholarly Activity Fund. $9,529.


Adams, M.D. University of Toronto Start-Up Funds. $140,000.

2016 - 17

Adams, M.D. AURA – Ryerson Undergraduate Research Assistant Funding Program. Ryerson University – Ryerson Arts Society. $3,040.


Adams, M.D., Corr, D. Hamilton AQHI Web Map Updates. Clean Air Hamilton and the City of Hamilton Public Health Services, $7,500.

2015 - 16

Kanaroglou, P.S., Higgins., C.H., Adams, M.D. Value Planning for New Highway Infrastructure in Ontario: Evidence and Extensions for Policy. Ontario Ministry of Transportation - Highway Infrastructure Innovation Funding Program, $36,250.


Adams, M.D., Corr, D. Escarpment Multi Use Commuting Trails (DASH) Background Study. Clean Air Hamilton and the City of Hamilton Public Health Services, $6,000.

2015 - 16

Adams, M.D., Burke, C., Garnett, R., Hall, J., Higgins, C. (Team Grant) MacBulb, the Lightbulb App. McMaster University School of Graduate Studies SPICES Funding. $5,000.

2014 - 16

Kanaroglou, P.S., Corr, D., Ferguson, M., Adams, M.D. Children’s Exposure to Criteria Air Pollution Due to Drop-off Programs at School. Ontario Ministry of the Environment - Best in Science Program, #1314051 $50,000.


Corr, D., Adams, M.D. Hamilton Air Quality Health Index Mapping Project. Clean Air Hamilton and the City of Hamilton Public Health Services, $10,000.

2014 - 15

Adams, M.D., Burke, C.M., Hall, J., Newbold, B. (Team Grant) Geographers Without Borders: A Skills Incubator. McMaster University - Forward With Integrity Grants. $5,000.

2014 - 15

Adams, M.D., Bui, R., Burke, C., Hall, J., Kelly, R. (Team Grant) Interdisciplinary Planning Lecture Series. McMaster University School of Graduate Studies SPICES Funding. $4,280.

Active Research Projects

Development of a Spatially transferable and Temporally resolved Urban Corridor Air and Noise pollution model: STUCAN 

Air and noise pollution are a global health and environmental burden. Within Canada the population continues to urbanize, which concentrates many pollution sources. This research program, will create air pollution and noise pollution models that are capable of predicting pollution impacts from sustainable transportation development, specifically light rail transportation in urban corridors, and model background urban pollution. The research is conducted on two Canadian cities, with the objective of being able to be implemented in any Canadian urban area. All levels of governments in Canada are investing in new rapid transit infrastructure to counter rising levels of traffic congestion, and related negative social, economic, and environmental impacts. Eleven light rail transit (LRT) lines (145.6 km of track) are planned or under construction in Canada, with construction start dates ranging from 2011 to 2021. Construction across the country of planned and on-going projects will continue until at least 2030. These LRT projects require building dedicated surface rail infrastructure along highly populated urban corridors and have anticipated construction periods ranging from four to more than 10 years. The proposed research aims to develop an air and noise pollution model that can predict air and noise pollution conditions in urban areas prior-to and during construction.

My research program aims to develop an air and noise pollution model that is spatially transferable and temporally resolved. This proposed research program holds significance in terms of understanding the air and noise quality impacts of sustainable transportation development, and in developing cutting edge tools for the modelling of environmental pollution from transport sources. The work centres around two key questions:

  1. What will be the air quality and noise impacts of light rail transit (LRT) construction in urban Canada?
  2. How can we improve upon the state-of-practice in urban air pollution modelling methods?

STUCAN is composed of the following modules:

  • Module 1: Develop a pollution monitor optimization approach for locating air pollution monitors that supplement existing fixed location units.
  • Module 2: Establish and model baseline pollution data in urban corridors prior to LRT construction.
  • Module 3: Calculate the change in urban air and noise pollution from base conditions attributable to LRT construction.
  • Module 4: Identify the factors challenging spatial transferability of urban pollution modelling techniques.
  • Module 5: Integrate knowledge of individual models and spatial domains.
  • Module 6: Application of model for future Canadian LRT lines.
  • Module 7: Air and noise pollution net effects due to LRT operation.
  • Module 8: Health Impact Assessment in the Urban Corridor.
  • Module 9: Environmental Impact Assessment in the Urban Corridor.

Funding Source: NSERC Discovery Grant

Quantifying the Effects of Public Transit Interventions on Urban Environments and Public Health 

Colloboration with Dr. Marianne HatzopoulouCanada Research Chair in Transportation and Air Quality

Despite the breadth of research on built environment predictors of public health, the impacts of public transit are largely unknown. As Canadian provinces embark in public transit strategies, primarily to reduce traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions, the co-benefits remain uncharacterized. Eleven light rail transit (LRT) lines will undergo construction between 2011 and 2021, providing natural experiments. We will combine air pollution monitoring (Adams) with transportation microsimulation and emission models (Hatzopoulou), and health impact assessment to estimate the effects of LRT on air quality and public health. 

Funding Source: XSeed - University of Toronto


Through the ROP you will gain practical skills and knowledge that can be applied to careers or toward future graduate studies. You will use your experiences to build strong relationships with instructors, learn about exciting new developments in their research field, and explore new areas of interest.

Leveraging Citizen Science for Air Pollution Modelling (Summer 2018)

The estimation of air pollution at a local level (household) has proven challenging because of the high spatial-temporal variability within an urban environment.  Recent technological improvements in air quality sensors have allowed units to decrease in size and cost, and remain accurate and precise. Clean Air Carolina through their AirKeeper program has been collecting local air quality data across the two states. This project will assess the use of air pollution data collected through Citizen Science for developing a land use regression air pollution model, which can estimate air pollution concentrations at unobserved locations.

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